Call for contributions 2018

Traduction française

“Break down the walls”
Third Edition PaaLabRes 2018, call for contributions


Our world is more and more defined by the presence of walls separating in radical ways human groups: they might be solid walls between determined political borders, or only conceptual ones, notably in cultural domains. We are in presence of a proliferation of small groups forming restricted communication networks and developing specific practices, often alternative to those that are perceived as dominant in a given space. This constitutes a form of democratic progress that makes it possible for a growing number of people to be involved in a cause or in some practices.

The presence of conceptual walls is absolutely necessary for any development of a significant collective activity. In order to establish themselves, collectives need to build a protecting shelter that allows them to ground their practice on some values and to freely develop their projects. Nevertheless, this way of achieving a certain specificity can often in the long run tend to exclude people who do not correspond to the way of thinking of the given collective and to its comportment. In an internal manner, these collectives can be very open to multidisciplinary activities, but by developing highly specialized languages, they can also only concern a very small number of people. Consequently, the possibility to open in some ways the protected spaces seems to be at the core of a reflection on walls.

An awareness of the ecology of practices is necessary: potentially, any practice can kill others and yet it depends on the parallel existence of other practices. The walls, closures, shelters should not be obstacles to the respect of others and to interacting with them. It is important that the practices be inscribed in a common space.

The possibility for any individuality to be situated at the limits of officially recognized fields, working on the paradoxes created by boundaries, should also be taken into account. In recent artistic practices, hybrid projects between two domains, two styles, two genres, have assumed great importance. Belonging simultaneously to several identities is a common phenomenon in our present society.

“Break down the walls” does not mean erasing them in order to create a generalized conformity to an order that would be determined from a particular place. “Break down the walls” however seems today sorely needed not only to counter political and cultural initiatives of exclusion, but also to create a real possibility for anyone to move freely in the space of diversity. Finally, “Break down the walls” requires the implementation of a particular set of provisions, which would guarantee the meeting of different groups on an equality basis and ensure that the exchanges between them would carry beyond a simple confrontation of points of view.

Call for contributions 2018

The collective PaaLabRes (Lyon, France), in the perspectives of the Third Edition of this digital space calls for contributions concerning realizations of projects pertaining to the idea of “Break down the walls”. You are invited to present some working processes associated to a critical reflection and their evolution in time (including the difficulties or failures you have encountered). The contributions should also reflect principles of equality of participation among the different groups or disciplines involved.

The call encompasses four categories of contribution:

  1. The documentation of a meeting between two (or more) groups having different practices (at least one of the groups should have an artistic purpose) in the form of exchanges of ideas, sharing of common artistic acts, or of a specific research project.
  2. The documentation of a process or of an artistic event having some connection with calling into question the presence of a wall, a political boundary, a particular prohibition.
  3. The documentation of a process or of a hybrid artistic event mixing two heterogeneous domains in a single action in which the distinctions between the two domains tend to be erased.
  4. Research articles, which serve as theoretical/practical references to the subject matter of “Break down the walls”.

Each proposition of documentation can be in the form of a text, a video, an audio track, an image or their combination. The texts can be presented in diverse formats: normal presentation, animated texts, texts read out loud, texts included as subtitles in a video.

We will not be able to include videos lasting more than 7 minutes (through a link they can refer to longer videos, existing films, etc.), and it will be difficult to include texts of more than 3000 words (except for research articles).


The 2018-19 Edition “Break down the walls”

The contributions will be published on this Internet site of the PaaLabRes collective, an evolving digital space. The 2016 Edition was based on a series of train stations. The 2017 Edition was based on a series of known places on a map.
The 2019 Edition “Break down the walls” will take a new artistic format: the publication of the contributions will be proposed in the graphic form of a sinuosity representing at the same time the continuity (without walls) between the contributions and the errant spirit meandering thought. The contributions will be published in the form of collages with no interruption of the flow, moving along this sinuosity. The aim is to produce a continuity between diversified practices. Furthermore, it would also be possible to publish artistic or textual reference objects in their separate integrity (outside the sinuosity form).

The contributors to this edition have to accept the principle of a collage realized by the PaaLabRes Collective (see for example the known place “Cardew” on the Map PaaLabRes 2017). The integrity of the contributions is guaranteed, except in cases where the authors accept some modifications.



June 2018: call for contributions.
October 15, 2018: closing date for submission of proposals.
December 31, 2018: announcement of accepted proposals by PaaLabRes.
May 2019: publication of the Third Edition.

Proposals should be sent to contribution[at]paalabres[dot]org.
If you have questions or difficulties concerning the format of your contribution, do not hesitate to contact the PaaLabRes team at the same address.

General Informations

The submitted texts can be in French or English. In the first case, they would be presented with an English abstract. In the second case, they will be published in English with a French abstract, or if possible in a bilingual version. English texts already published will be translated in French with references to their initial publication.

The members of PaaLabRes Collective form the editorial committee, which will determine the content of the digital space.

The members of the production committee are: Samuel Chagnard, Jean-Charles François, Noémi Lefebvre and Nicolas Sidoroff.


Download the Call for contributions (3p, letter format, 152Mo)